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Finally, we have brackets! Got those dancing shoes on Douglas?

It's time for The Great Prognosticator to do his thing. I'll only be making selected picks to start, I haven't seen a lot of these teams yet. From the Sweet 16 on, I'll try 'em all.

Let it be known that The GP does not make emotional picks. I admit to being somwhat pro-my team & conference, but if I think my team / conference will lose, I'll pick against them in a second. For example, if MS State survives to play Duke in that regional, I'll take Duke right now.

So.....

First, a correction. It is obvious to The GP now that Stanford will not be the first 1 seed out as previously stated. St. Joe's has no inside game and gets out-rebounded almost every time out. They will go first. Not in the first round; in the 3rd (to Wake Forest?). They'll be watching the Great 8 with everyone else.

The yearly "12 beats a 5" pick:

Manhattan over Florida is the fashionable pick, but wrong. There won't be one this year.

I'm also not gonna bore anybody by picking any 1's, 2's, or 3's.

Texas Tech over Charlotte

Wisconsin over Richmond

South Carolina over Memphis

Washington over UAB

Seton Hall over Arizona

North Carolina over Air Force

Xavier over Louisville (sorry Ted)

Southern Illinois over Alabama

Vanderbilt over Western Michigan

Dayton over DePaul

Okay, I've got some guesses in there...what the heck.

Wildshot Upset Pick:

(14) Northern Iowa over (3) Georgia Tech

If I were picking the Championship game right now (I'm not), I'd say Duke vs. Kentucky. They're the 2 best teams from the 2 toughest conferences, in that order. But this year...who knows.

Let the games begin! Care to take a few shots, o' Left Coast SoothSayer?

Brian G.

The Great Prognosticator [:-mischievous]

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Yo Ted,

Sorry, busy as hell lately. What about Kentucky? You mean in the first round? That's a gimmie, not a worthy prediction. It seems absurd to me that the committee has two barely-made-it teams play for the right to be devoured by KY in the first round. Just name the sacrificial lamb and get it over with.

Brian G. [:-basketball]

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Originally posted by Brian G.

The yearly "12 beats a 5" pick:

Manhattan over Florida is the fashionable pick, but wrong. There won't be one this year.

Wrong, and how! I heard last night that Florida's Walsh had a blister the size of a lemon on his foot. I thought about switching, but didn't. My bad.

Texas Tech over Charlotte Right

Wisconsin over Richmond

South Carolina over Memphis

Washington over UAB

Seton Hall over Arizona Right

North Carolina over Air Force Right

Xavier over Louisville (sorry Ted)

Southern Illinois over Alabama Wrong

Vanderbilt over Western Michigan

Dayton over DePaul Wrong

3 right, 3 wrong on day 1. Yuck! By far the most disappointing is Dayton, who had the last shot in both regulation and the first overtime, and just could not close the deal. The Alabama / Southern Illinois game was almost that bad, with Bama scoring the game winner with 5 seconds left. 2 dabs of luck and I'm 5 - 1! Such is prognostication.

Lots of great games though. How 'bout them Cardinals, Douglas? [:-basketball]

Wildshot Upset Pick:

(14) Northern Iowa over (3) Georgia Tech

If I get this one right, it's beer on the house. Not you Morrison, I'm a poor man.

Brian G.

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Originally posted by Brian G.

Well, The Great Prognosticator is 50 / 50 for the first round (6 - 6), not up to my usual standards. But in my own defense, I included my wildshot upset pick in that, and this is damn tough picking in the middle of the brackets in the first round. Hopefully I can do better.

Texas Tech over Charlotte Right

Wisconsin over Richmond Right

South Carolina over Memphis Wrong

Washington over UAB Wrong

Seton Hall over Arizona Right

North Carolina over Air Force Right

Xavier over Louisville (sorry Ted) Right

Southern Illinois over Alabama Wrong

Vanderbilt over Western Michigan Right

Dayton over DePaul Wrong

Florida over Manhattan Wrong

I'm particularly happy for Vandy, who was picked to lose by every so-called expert I've heard. Hah! The GP knew better.

Wildshot Upset Pick:

(14) Northern Iowa over (3) Georgia Tech Wrong

Man, was I ever close to hitting this one! N.I. was down by 3 with the ball and 20 something seconds left. Didn't get it done. Shoot! Nobody, but nobody had that one but me. Oh well.

Next Round: What the heck, I'll try 'em all. It only comes once a year, just like Christmas.

Kentucky over UAB

Kansas over Pacific

Boston College over Georgia Tech

Gonzaga over Nevada

St Joe's over Texas Tech

Wake Forest over Manhattan

Wisconsin over Pitt

Oklahoma St. over Memphis

Duke over Seton Hall

Illinois over Cincinnati

Texas over North Carolina

Mississippi St. over Xavier (Go Dawgs!)

Stanford over Alabama

Maryland over Syracuse

Vanderbilt over N.C State

UConn over DePaul

Mostly favorites, but not all. There's a reason why the favorites are the favorites y'know.

If I were picking a wild-shot upset: Stanford may have big trouble with Bama, if Bama is on.

Brian G.

The Fearless One

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Alabama played a good game, but I thought Stanford was not really up for it, for whatever reason. They fouled a lot, which gave Bama all the help they needed. I've heard a lot about Childress (Stanford star), but he's not a very good defender from what I saw. His man went right around him to the hoop at least 6 - 8 times that I remember. Bama vs. Syracuse is a tough call, I'm gonna have to think about that one.

Shock of the day for me was Nevada over Gonzaga. The Zags just flat-out panicked with 5 minutes left and started throwing up long 3's every trip down the floor. Not smart.

Kentucky better have their poop in a group when they meet UAB tomorrow.

I can't recall the kids' name, but the point gaurd for Wake Forest just put that team up on his back and carried them to a win. Big heart.

As Scarlet said, "Tomorrow is another day." I love it.

Brian G., The GP

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Originally posted by Brian G.

Texas Tech over Charlotte Right

Wisconsin over Richmond Right

South Carolina over Memphis Wrong

Washington over UAB Wrong

Seton Hall over Arizona Right

North Carolina over Air Force Right

Xavier over Louisville (sorry Ted) Right

Southern Illinois over Alabama Wrong

Vanderbilt over Western Michigan Right

Dayton over DePaul Wrong

Florida over Manhattan Wrong

Wildshot Upset Pick:

(14) Northern Iowa over (3) Georgia Tech Wrong

Next Round: What the heck, I'll try 'em all. It only comes once a year, just like Christmas.

Kentucky over UAB Wrong

Kansas over Pacific Right

Boston College over Georgia Tech Wrong

Gonzaga over Nevada Wrong

St Joe's over Texas Tech Right

Wake Forest over Manhattan Right

Wisconsin over Pitt Wrong

Oklahoma St. over Memphis Right

Duke over Seton Hall Right

Illinois over Cincinnati Right

Texas over North Carolina Right

Mississippi St. over Xavier Wrong

Stanford over Alabama Wrong

Maryland over Syracuse Wrong

Vanderbilt over N.C State Right

UConn over DePaul Right

If I were picking a wild-shot upset: Stanford may have big trouble with Bama, if Bama is on. Right

Jeez Louise, how is anybody supposed to figure out this tournament? Forgive me for counting my Stanford / Bama pick both ways, but I didn't hear any of the TV genius' give Bama a prayer. Still, The Great Prognosticator barely crawled above .500, at 16 Right / 13 Wrong...tough field.

It wasn't the Bulldogs day, that's the breaks. Hats off to Xavier, they are hot.

I love the way Vanderbilt continues to make fools of the experts. Hah! That was one helluva comeback too.

Biggest disappointment of the day was Georgia Tech vs. Boston College. BC had the ball for the last shot, down by 1 with 12 seconds left. They didn't even get a shot off. Didn't they know they were fouling up the GP's pick? Silly boys.

The big surprizes are Nevada and UAB, who knew? I'm impressed with the way both of these teams have played, they don't look like spoliers out there. They look solid.

Picking them all again in a day or two. Some of you pecker-heads join in here, pick one game or all of 'em, you won't die if it doesn't work out. Take a shot.

Brian G., The GP

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Now the plot thickens. We know who was hot last week, but will they still be hot this week? I saw part of a show on ESPN the other night about how many people plan their vacations around this tournament so they can go to Vegas and bet on the games. Crazy. The GP has to work too hard for his money to bet on something as mercurial as college basketball in the Big Dance.

And away we go:

UAB over Kansas, in a tight one

Nevada over Georgia Tech, also tight

Wake Forest over St. Joe's, as predicted last week

Pitt over Oklahoma State, my shakiest pick

Duke over Illinois, and anybody else they play

Xavier over Texas, maybe the best game of the round

Syracuse over Alabama, due to experience

UConn over Vandy, but I hope I'm wrong

I'm sticking with the 2 underdogs this round (UAB / Nevada), I hope they play like they did last week.

Wake over St. Joe's is the one I want to see come through the most.

Great runs by Bama and Vandy, but they both play teams with a lot more tournament experience. Bama has the better shot at moving on.

Brian G. The GP [:-basketball]

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[quote]Originally posted by E. Burns

I was trying to find something to watch on TV the other day and guess what, nothing on but the big dance.

So what was the problem? [:D] Let me guess, they took off your favorite soap for it. Women hate that.

When's BBall season over? What next?

In a couple of weeks the college basketball will be done. That still leaves the pro-postseason. Then baseball and golf creep in to bore us for the summer. Life doesn't begin again till fall, when pre-season FOOTBALL [:-football] cranks up, and MLB playoffs start. Not a sports fan, my dear?

Brian G.

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Originally posted by Brian G.

UAB over Kansas Wrong

Nevada over Georgia Tech Wrong

Wake Forest over St. Joe's Wrong

Pitt over Oklahoma State Wrong

Duke over Illinois Right

Xavier over Texas Right

Syracuse over Alabama Wrong

UConn over Vandy Right

Yecch, who picking these nags? Oh yeah...me. Bad round for the GP, looking kinda foolish here. Back to near even, 19 right - 18 wrong...pitiful.

Bama has the better shot at moving on. Right, but I'm not counting it.

Next Round:

Kansas over Georgia Tech, hard to judge

Oklahoma State over St. Joes, tight

Duke over Xavier, probably tight

UConn over Alabama, hard to judge

Most likely blowout: UConn over Bama

Everything depends on Bama's 3 point game. They need to rain em' to have a chance to win. No rain, could be a snoozer.

Most fun to watch: either of the middle two, watch 'em both.

Serving notice:

I like Duke to win it all. I'll take them in every game for as long as they're in.

Brian G.

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Originally posted by Brian G.

Kansas over Georgia Tech Wrong

Oklahoma State over St. Joes Right

Duke over Xavier Right

UConn over Alabama Right

Well that's a little better, 3 out of 4 to put me at 22 Right - 19 Wrong...wow, I'm good [:-yuck]. All great games too, except:

Most likely blowout: UConn over Bama Right, but not counting it. Cudos to Bama', terrific run in the tournament. A nod also to St. Joe's, who went farther than I thought they could.

Final Four

Duke over UConn - This should be the championship game, but that's the way it goes. Duke is amazing, but let's be honest; if you want to beat Duke in the Big Dance you have to beat the team, the entire coaching staff, their fans, the referees, and the network. Tall order. Coach K is a genius at building boys /players into men / warriors. If my son were old enough and played well enough, I'd give anything to tuck him under Coach K's wing.

Oklahoma State over Georgia Tech - This is a toss-up, but since I haven't picked GT the whole way I'm not gonna start now. I probably should, they just played their best game of the tournament, but I ain't. OK State is relentless and deep, and if they can hold down GT gaurd J. Jack, GT won't have enough bullets.

The spear is coming to a point.

Brian G. [:-basketball]

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Originally posted by Brian G.

Duke over UConn Wrong

Oklahoma State over Georgia Tech Wrong

You gotta be kidding me! Somebody send me a bloody fingerprint, 'cause I ain't got a clue. No way Duke should've lost that game. They went uncharacteristically brain-dead in the last 3 minutes, taking nothing but bad shots. Oh well, at 22 right and 21 wrong, the worst I can do is break even. I suppose I should be happy with that after the way this tournament has gone.

I'm gonna do Georgia Tech a favor, and continue to pick against them. It's been good for them so far.

UConn over Georgia Tech, for the title.

Should be a terrific game, either way.

Brian G.

The Clueless Prognosticator [:-paperbag]

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Originally posted by Brian G.

UConn over Georgia Tech, for the title. Right!

Should be a terrific game, either way. Wrong!, but it doesn't count.

Well Hell,

At least I got the big one right. 23 right, 21 wrong...how embarrasing. Next year I'm gonna assign each team a number, and put it all on a grid on a big piece of cardboard. Then I'll have my 5 year old throw darts at it to determine his picks, while I do mine the usual way. He probably would have clobbered me this year. I can see myself saying "Gee Jake, you've got Pacific over Gonzaga. I wouldn't count on that one."

Brian G.

Is It Football Season Yet? [:-football]

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